GETTYSBURG — National radio host Glenn Beck hopes to bring 30,000 people to Gettysburg next summer with a goal of restoring citizens’ covenant with God.
A gathering called “Restoring the Covenant on the Sacred Land of Gettysburg” is planned July 3-5 at various venues in the Gettysburg area, Beck said in an interview with the Gettysburg Times Friday. Beck plans to use the Eisenhower Inn and Conference Center, South Mountain Fairgrounds, Gettysburg College and other sites, he said.
“Every time we renew the covenant, we put ourselves in a position of growth, change,” Beck said. “We used to be able to disagree and not be nasty.”
Beck acknowledged that his radio and television appearances may have helped contribute to some of America’s divisiveness.
“We all played a role in it,” Beck said.
Beck said he chose Gettysburg because it “feels like an updated city in a beautiful, historic town.” He first visited the area while living in Philadelphia and has had a great experience every time he returned, he said.
“We want to bring people together from all walks of life and stress American history. That’s why we really felt it was important to hold this gathering in Gettysburg,” he said.
A schedule of events for the weekend is still being finalized, Beck said, but attendees should expect break-out sessions on Friday, the main rally on Saturday and a religious service on Sunday. A fireworks show that Beck said he is designing himself will light the sky on Saturday.
“This has to be a great experience for the entire town, not only the people who are attending,” Beck said.
Beck said the larger gatherings will be held outside of the borough due to needed space but he plans to bring a traveling museum to a location downtown that has not yet been finalized.
Beck said he mainly hopes to attract families to this event, which he said “will be 100% apolitical.”
“There will be no politics allowed. I am a control freak and very adamant about that,” he said.
The weekend will be a for-profit venture, Beck said, but donations will be made to Operation Underground Railroad and The Nazarene Fund. Operation Underground Railroad exists “to rescue children from sex trafficking” and The Nazarene Fund’s mission is “to liberate the captive, to free the enslaved, and to rescue, rebuild, restore and revive the lives of Christians and other persecuted religious and ethnic minorities wherever and whenever they are in need,” according to their respective websites.
“We are trying to use this as a launchpad to let people know slavery is worse now than it was in 1863,” Beck said.
Norris Flowers, CEO and president of Destination Gettysburg, said he and his staff have been working with Beck and his team the past couple of months to bring the gathering to Gettysburg.
“Destination Gettysburg is committed to attracting visitors to Adams County, including organizations who host annual events. We were pleased that Mercury One chose Gettysburg for their event, which is estimated to bring 20,000 or more visitors to experience our destination’s history and culinary scene over the 2020 Fourth of July weekend,” Flowers said. “This will spread awareness about Gettysburg and Adams County as a tourist destination and provide a huge economic impact for the entire county.”
Tickets and room packages for “Restoring the Covenant on the Sacred Land of Gettysburg” are not yet available but those interested can “reserve their place in line” for when they do become available by making what Beck is calling a donation at www.restorethecovenant.com.